From new research on teaching and learning, to collaboration with campus partners, to the launch of our government information services program and the Explore Chicago Collections digital portal, 2015 was another exciting year for the DePaul University Library! Here’s a chance to revisit our top stories of the year as we get ready for more in 2016.
(10) Technology training comes to the library – the library launched a pilot program in early 2015 to make Lynda.com tutorials available to DePaul University students, faculty, and staff through kiosks in the Richardson and Loop libraries. This successful pilot contributed to the university’s decision to make Lynda.com more widely available as part of Information Services’ technology training programs.
(9) Ancient artifacts find a new home – the library became the new home for the Charles L. Souvay Cuneiform Tablets Collection in 2014, and celebrated this acquisition with an exhibit and public lecture.
(8) New support for digital scholarship – following a survey of DePaul University faculty regarding their use of the library’s scholarly support services, we launched a re-designed digital services section of our Web site highlighting successful collaboration with colleges and other campus units as well as programs designed to support digital publishing, digital humanities, and other emergent areas of the DePaul academic program.
(7) DePaul librarian informs practice with research – Heather Jagman, Coordinator for Reference, Instruction, & Academic Engagement, co-edited a new collection of essays published by the Association of College & Research Libraries, Not Just Where to Click: Teaching Students How to Think About Information. Building on the experience of successful instructional collaboration that we have seen at DePaul for many years, Jagman’s new collection (with co-editor Troy Swanson of Moraine Valley Community College) highlights “how librarians and faculty can work together to teach students about the nature of expertise, authority, and credibility” in the digital age.
(6) Sharing our “hidden treasures” with the community – since the launch of the DePaul Heritage Digital Collections in 2013, we have been exploring new ways to engage all members of the DePaul University community with the materials we hold that tell the story of our faculty, students, and neighborhood(s). In 2015, we collaborated with the Office of Public Relations and Communications and the Office of Advancement to highlight Special Collections and Archives through a regular “Into the Archives” feature in Newsline and through a feature story in DePaul Magazine.
(5) Making an impact on first-year instruction – building on our successful collaboration with colleagues in Academic Affairs and Student Affairs to revise the information literacy component of the Chicago Quarter’s Common Hour program in 2014 as part of the Association of College & Research Libraries’ “Assessment in Action” grant program, librarians collaborated with faculty colleagues to revise the instruction provided to first-year students in WRD 104 and HON 100, where many of our students have “their first in-depth encounter with using library resources.” The DePaul University Library is distinguished by its focus on teaching and learning across the curriculum, as we met almost 500 classes last year for information literacy instruction at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
(4) Engaging the community – in support of DePaul’s engagement with Catholic K-12 schools in the City of Chicago, the library collaborated with DePaul College Prep High School to provide support for the teachers and students in that school’s just-launched international baccalaureate program. Reflecting on this new partnership, DePaul Prep English teacher Emily Hochman said: “For most of these students, this is their first exposure to extended academic research. Their experience here will carry through to help them with all their IB courses, and will carry through to college.”
(3) Focusing on special collections – continuing our focus on teaching and learning, librarians in Special Collections and Archives began working with faculty to clearly define information literacy learning goals related to the use of primary source materials such as letters, diaries, and other manuscript materials. Benefiting from the close connections between our special collections and the teaching and learning interests of our faculty and students, DePaul is in an excellent position to integrate instruction in the use of primary sources and the development of “artifactual literacy” among our students as a component of our instructional programs.
(2) A “digital depository” – the DePaul University Library became one of the first “digital-only” members of the Federal Depository Library Program in 2015 (and the first in Illinois), and launched its new government information services program with a celebration attended by students, faculty, and members of the FDLP community, including Illinois Secretary of State (and State Librarian) Jesse White.
(1) Exploring Chicago Collections – 2015 saw the launch of an extraordinary set of initiatives for which the DePaul University Library’s staff provided leadership through the Chicago Collections consortium, including a public exhibit, lecture series, and, most importantly, the launch of the Explore Chicago Collections digital portal. With DePaul’s unique first-year-experience program (Discover/Explore Chicago) and teaching and research interests across the curriculum focused on the history of the city and its people, we expect the ongoing development of Chicago Collections to be a top story for us (and for our community) in 2016, as well!
Thank you for being part of the DePaul University Library community in 2015! If you would like to know more about any of the stories above, please contact your liaison librarian. We look forward to working with you to write new stories in 2016!